Most women start dreaming of their wedding day when they’re little girls. They know exactly what dress they want, what colors they want to use, what kind of flowers, what song they want to walk down the aisle to – whatever details you can think of, most women have thought about it.
I was not that woman. Sure, I thought about my wedding day occasionally, but I really didn’t care about the details too much. I knew I would get married in a church, wear a white dress, and marry the man of my dreams. Heck, I didn’t even really care what my engagement ring would look like. Princess or emerald cut? What the what?
The man of my dreams is who I really thought about a lot.
By the time I was halfway through high school – and had dated a handful of guys – I decided that I probably wouldn’t meet my future husband until I was in college. That was because I had created this idea of my dream guy, with the following characteristics: blond hair and blue eyes, a soccer player, Catholic, plays an instrument, and likes to read. The main criteria is that he would be really, really, really into his faith. There was nobody who fit that description at my high school, so obviously, I had to wait until college to meet him….right?
I guess it’s not surprising that my future husband only met one of those criteria – he was Catholic – and that I actually “met” him the following year, as a junior in high school. (I put “met” in parentheses because we had actually been going to school together since the first grade – we just didn’t really talk to each other until our junior year.)
Luckily for me, God knew what I needed in a husband more than I did. And while he didn’t meet my self-imposed guidelines, he ended up being exactly the man I needed. The man who helped me loosen up a little and who helped me get enough guts to dance in front of other people without caring what they think.
He got me interested in NASCAR, basketball, and the NFL (although let’s be real, soccer is still the best). He’s given me a greater appreciation for all of the hard work that goes into Christmas decorating. He’s made me realize that getting out of the house can be just the thing I need, even though I’m an introvert.
More importantly, he’s reminded me in times of darkness that I mustn’t lose faith – that God is always with me, even when it doesn’t feel like it.
Basically, Logan has made me a better person. And boy, I didn’t see that one coming. I didn’t know that the cute boy next to me in my high school chemistry class was going to turn into the man that stood next to me through the greatest moments of my life and the worst. God has a way of knowing exactly what we need in life – in a spouse and a life partner.
And I’m so glad God gave me Logan.
I always imagined – and I’m sure most women do too – that I would marry my best friend in life. That we would always have fun together, that we would support each other in everything, and that we would have one of those marriages that everyone else wish they had.
For the first few years, that is not how I would have described the marriage between Logan and me. Yes, we had some great months, but if I were honest, there were just as many really bad months. Months where I felt completely overwhelmed at the thought that our marriage would never be as great as I imagined. Months where I seriously doubted that I had discerned my vocation correctly.
Somewhere around the six-year mark, though, things started to change. If the first six years felt like an uphill battle, that six-year mark was where we could see the top of the hill – the place where we wanted our marriage to be – and we kept trudging up to the top. The next couple of years is what I would consider the “transition years” – the years where we would be doing really well, slip back into our old ways, but get back into a groove again.
By the eight-year mark, I had zero doubts about our marriage. Zero. And I know that might sound kind of silly, because perhaps there are people who have honestly never doubted their marriage, and the fact that it took me eight years might sound bad. But it’s true.
The fact that most divorces happen in the first seven years makes a whole lot of sense to me now, because it really does take that long to work out the kinks, so to speak. Maybe a lot of people figure it out sooner, but Logan and I have had our fair share of trials, so it took us a bit. (And if you’re still figuring it out, don’t worry! You’re in good company.)
I’m not sharing this timeline of our marriage to show that everyone should have a good marriage by a certain point. Heck, I know some people who have been married decades that don’t really seem happy.
I’m sharing this to tell you that the a great marriage is possible. No, it’s not going to be easy, and no, it won’t happen overnight. You’ll likely be humbled a million times, make the same stupid mistakes a million times, and apologize a million times. But at the end of it, you’ll be a better spouse. You’ll know that all of the hard stuff was worth it, because now you get to spend the rest of your life with your best friend, and you can’t imagine doing it with anybody else.
P.S. If you missed it, we posted two videos on our YouTube channel this week!